Appeal Court upholds former officer’s dismissal

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Appeal Court Justices Dawn Gregory, Rishi Persaud and acting Justice Dr Arif Bulkan upheld the 2013 decision of High Court Judge Brassington Reynolds who ruled that the June, 15, 2002 dismissal of police corporal Patrick Austin was fair.

He was dismissed via a letter signed by the then Police Commissioner Floyd McDonald after Austin was found guilty by disciplinary action of receiving a bribe. Austin was the subordinate officer in charge of the licencing and certifying office in Anna Regina, Essequibo back then.

According to the case file, the police force received an anonymous letter in January 2001 from a concerned citizen with claims that Austin solicited a bribe to obtain a driver’s licence in the year 2000.

Investigations later revealed that he obtained $50,000 from Abdul Khan to secure two driver’s licences,

The ex-corporal implicated in the illegal act was informed of the investigation in November 2001.

He took his case to the High Court but after Justice Reynolds ruled against him, he appealed.

However, according to the Appellate Justices, while there may been procedural lapses in the conduct of the investigation, the purpose of the Police Discipline Act was exercised in Austin’s matter.

The Appeal Court affirmed Justice Reynolds’s May 2013 decision.

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